Sunday, September 6, 2009

The most wonderful of fairy tales

For the past few years, The Jesus Storybook Bible has been figuratively on our shelf. I say figuratively because it rarely stays on the shelf. It is a frequent choice at bedtime, a rotating staple in our family's devotions, and, now that R can read, a favorite of hers during rest time.

Though I grew up in church, as did David, and knew countless Bible stories and characters, Sally Lloyd-Jones' book helps connect the dots as I read to my children. While I might struggle with all the explanation and finding the right wording, her retelling, along with the great illustrations by Jago, bring it all together.

Lloyd-Jones uses the context of our culture's renewed fascination with fairy tales and heroes in her introduction: "It's like an adventure story about a young Hero who came from a far country to win back his lost treasure. It's a love story about a brave Prince who leaves his palace, his throne, everything to rescue the one he loves. It's like the most wonderful of fairy tales that have come true in real life. You see, the best thing about this story is--it's true." With vivid word choice, Lloyd-Jones foreshadows or reflects upon or ties in the greater Shepherd, stronger Warrior, perfect Leader, and wonderful Rescuer. God's love is described as His "Never Stopping, Never Giving Up, Unbreaking, Always and Forever Love," a phrase she repeats several times. These stories are meant to be read aloud, with passion and excitement. They captivate young ears. I get goose bumps each time I'm reminded of my Rescuer. I get caught up in the poetry and beauty of God's one story. This "children's" book stirs my heart each time I read it.

(I'm not the only parent or adult to get caught up in these stories. You can hear Sara Groves' son read from the story of Gabriel's visit to Mary on her Christmas CD. Jason Gray's newest CD is entitled Everything Sad is Coming Untrue--one of Lloyd-Jones' phrases. And Andrew Peterson opened his Behold the Lamb of God concert this year with a reading from the book.)

In October, a new edition of The Jesus Storybook Bible will be released. This deluxe edition features the narration on three CDs for children--and their parents--to listen to. You can check out the new website at to hear an audio sample and see some of the illustrations. The Jesus Storybook Bible has been my favorite baby shower gift to give and I've encouraged parents and grandparents to give them to their children and grandchildren. And what a gift it is!


Nana said...

Is this on the kids/your Christmas list? Shopping starts soon (actually it already has)

Scribbling Suit said...

You can actually buy the CDs separately if you already have the book, though we might need another copy to last us through all three kids.